Welcome to a Week in the Life. Each week I will be sharing a round-up of all the different ways I saved our family money or time. Or both. The purpose of this series is to highlight the fact that there are SO many different methods you can use to lower your overall budget that don’t involve mad-crazy coupon shopping.
Shopping for kids clothes and gear
I’ll be perfectly honest, my kids’ grandparents buy them more clothes than they possibly need, so clothes shopping isn’t high on my list. What I do is go through their clothes every season and note some of the more important pieces we need, like snow boots, swim trunks, heavy jackets and shoes.
Twice a year, we attend the Columbia Community Church children’s consignment sale in Richland and I “try” to stick to the items we really need. Going in with a focused list helps us narrow down our purchases and we find items at far, far below retail price. We were out of town for this last sale, but I was able to send my friend Sarah with a short list and she scored for us. She picked up a pair of Gymboree swim trunks and a pair of Skechers sneakers for just $9 total! Because we were intentional about our purchases and bought before we truly were desperate for them, we saved a ton of money. This would also work for yard sales, thrift stores and more.
Saving on dryer sheets
I have been wanting to try making my own fabric softener for quite some time now, so when we ran out of dryer sheets, I decided to get the party started. Since I randomly had a bottle of fabric softener in the laundry room (this never happens!), I decided to start there. I soaked a washcloth in fabric softener and let it dry completely. Once it was dry, I threw it in with a load of clothes to dry. When I fold a load of laundry, I just pluck out the washcloth and toss it back in the dryer for the next load. With each full soak, I am able to get anywhere from 12-15 full loads. Honestly, this has worked far better at removing static than a traditional dryer sheet!
Since I don’t generally buy fabric softener, next step is to make my own using vinegar and hair conditioner. Has anyone tried it?
What to do with 40 pounds of chicken?
Our Zaycon Foods chicken order was available to pick up recently while we were in Las Vegas. Again, Sarah to the rescue! She picked up my chicken along with hers and hung on to it for me until we got back. Because the first thing everyone wants to do when they get back from Vegas is process 40 pounds of chicken.
Honestly, it was pretty quick this time around. I threw about five pounds in the crock pot with two cans of organic diced tomatoes and cooked on low for about 4 hours (longer if you have an older crock). Once it was done, I shredded the chicken and froze with the juices to keep on hand for emergency protein. I also baked about four pounds with some spicy steak seasoning (350 degrees for about 40-45 minutes). I kept this in the fridge for salads, easy lunches and snacks.
With the rest of the chicken, I just trimmed the fat, separated the breasts and froze 3 to one gallon Ziploc bag. The whole process only took me about an hour and we now have a freezer full of chicken that we bought at an amazing price.
If you aren’t familiar with Zaycon Foods, they have wonderful events throughout the year where they sell chicken, ground beef, sausage and more in large quantities at awesome prices. Sign up for a free account so you can be notified of upcoming events. If you did order and are looking for ideas on how to prepare your chicken, check out my Pinterest board for inspiration.
Extremely Important Questions
Have you ever made your own fabric softener? What did you think?
Did you order Zaycon chicken this time around? How do you process it? Do you prefer to cook and prepare it all before freezing?
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